3 Tips for Gaining Clarity in Customer Service

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don't make assumptionsOver the past two weeks, I’ve taken Don Miguel Ruiz’s wisdom and shared two of The Four Agreements  and how they relate to customer service. Check ‘em out if you haven’t already:

  1. The Power of Your Word in Customer Service
  2. Customer Service Wisdom: Don’t Take it Personally

Now, come along with me as we move on to the third agreement:

Don’t Make Assumptions

Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life. ~Don Miguel Ruiz

Jeremy even shared a post about this last year titled Repeat After Me. To Assume Makes An…

In customer service, when you assume you know what the customer is going to say or do, jump in and interrupt them with your response, your new name is going to be Jack! (teehee Jack…what you are if you “assume”…get it?)

As much as we think we know the customer’s problem because we’ve heard the same story from other customers, we still need to listen. This situation might be different. Don’t just assume you know right away what the issue is…even if you actually do.

We’re always making up stories in our minds and eventually, will begin to believe them. This only leads to misunderstandings, stress and ultimately, a not so hot customer experience.

Here, these might help:

3 Tips for Gaining Clarity in Customer Service

  1.  Ask, Ask and Ask! I’m a fan of the saying, “There’s no such thing as a stupid question.” There really isn’t. Ask questions, no matter how ridiculous you think they are. The more you ask, the less you assume and the more you learn and understand.
  2. Awareness, Awareness and Awareness!  Notice the types of situations you’re assuming in. Being aware of your assumptions will help you narrow down insecurities, which you can work toward improving on in the future. Make a list of these situations and examine them, after they already happened, with an open mind, asking yourself what you needed to do in the moment to avoid jumping to conclusions.
  3. Attention, Attention and Attention! Listen and give attention to the person you are speaking with. Try to be completely present in the situation. Tune in entirely to what is being said, without making too many assumptions in your mind about what’s going on. Giving that person the floor to express themselves will allow you to really concentrate on the authenticity of their words.

By not making assumptions, you’re staying present in the situation, which allows you to stay part of the customer experience. By not making assumptions, you’re not making up scenarios in your mind and causing unnecessary misunderstandings. By not making assumptions, you’re gaining more clarity from your customers, which gives you opportunities to improve and learn.

By not making assumptions, you’re on the journey toward being even more awesome!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Jenny Dempsey
Jenny is Consumer Experience Manager for Apeel Sciences and FruitStand with more than 15 years of customer service experience. She is co-founder and a regular contributor on CustomerServiceLife.com.

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